Senator Pauline Hanson, pictured with Buderim MP and One Nation Queensland leader Steve Dickson, will be a guest at a forum in Buderim next week to consider potential amendments to the Retirement Villages Act.
Senator Pauline Hanson, pictured with Buderim MP and One Nation Queensland leader Steve Dickson, will be a guest at a forum in Buderim next week to consider potential amendments to the Retirement Villages Act. Patrick Woods

Retirement village residents demand better protection

AN OMBUDSMAN or an independent arbitrator was required to better protect the interests of people living in retirement villages according to a Sunshine Coast MP who will host a forum next week that aims to drive changes to the Retirement Villages Act.

More than 100 retirees have already registered for the Buderim forum which will be attended by Senator Pauline Hanson and has Association of Residents of Queensland Retirement Villages vice president Mike Fairbairn as guest speaker.

Buderim MP and Queensland One Nation leader Steve Dickson said the forum on August 3 had been prompted by a constant stream of residents coming to his electoral office with concerns about the impacts of the Act on their lives.

Mr Dickson said while there was a principle of buyer beware, there were real concerns the Act and retirement village contracts favoured operators over residents.

He said the lack of an ombudsman or independent arbitrator left elderly residents with no other option than the courts to test their rights.

"Politicians need to step up and rewrite the Act," Mr Dickson said.

He said people were paying up to $400,000 for a place in a retirement village which devalued at 5% annually and for which ongoing tenure could be fraught with uncertainty.

The forum would be held in the Buderim War Memorial Community Hall from 11.30am and 1pm and follows the electorate's annual morning tea for community groups.

It will gather feedback to inform a push for amendments to the Act.


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